Tag Archives: inspiration

#WildNewsWed // SIX DAYS AND COUNTING!

Heyheyhey, everybody!

I am currently panicking. With KINETIC REBIRTH releasing digitally next Tuesday (September 19th), my day job taking a sharp turn on a rocky mountain side, and my creativity monster giving me flack, my mind never shuts off. I have woken up slightly late every day this week thus far, luckily only arriving a few minutes late to day job. My brain has been going a hundred miles an hour as I prep for release day, which makes my body exhausted. If that wasn’t bad enough, I’ve been getting crippling chest pain, which doctor’s tell me is due to anxiety.

No. Frickin. Way. NEVER would have guessed THAT. (Catch the sarcasm?)

Anyway, long story short, lots of stuff going on. KINETICS #2 (Title TBD) reached 40,000 words a few weeks ago, with a total goal of minimum 60-65k. ACCOUNT OF SECRETS, my Chaos Accounts Story #4, is only two or three scenes away from its cliffhanger ending, so close I can taste it.

I haven’t touched either in a week.

My creativity and inspiration has been floating back to the series I was writing with JV. If you want an idea of how we decided to coauthor a book together, that story starts as far back as when we first met in October 2011. Check out the videos JV and I did for my Youtube Channel: [Part 1 here] and [Part 2 here]. Part 1 talks about our friendship, while Part 2 talks writing a book series together. Also, if you want a good grasp of JV’s character and personality (and mine as well), check out [this video] (also below) of us acting like goofballs::

 

This has happened once before, back in April, where my inspiration for writing always crept back to Lite & Darke (Our series title). It’s a struggle, because, currently, I do not have access to her notebooks. Legal stuff I’m not going to get into. The point is, I coped with it by finishing a few unfinished chapters I’d written, and updated our outline/word count spreadsheet. That gave me enough satisfaction to finally move back to projects I might actually have a chance of finishing, aka, Chaos Accounts and Kinetics.

Well, it came creeping back into my brain lately, probably because of the nearby release date, and the fact that JV would have had her baby around the seven month marker since her death.

Not an hour has gone by every day since January 31st that I don’t think of her. She was my closest friend, practically a sister. I made a promise to her while during the funeral home viewing and at the church ceremony, as well as promised each of her family members and close friends, that I would finish Lite & Darke for her, and her name would be on the covers right next to mine. While KINETICS is my ultimate dedication to her life and personality, Lite & Darke is my way of showing how we helped each other to grow as writers, how we had a chemistry with creative juices and thought processes. In fact, one of us would have an idea for a scene, and when telling the other over the phone, the other would cut the original plotter’s description, but say the exact same thing the originator was going to say. I swear the two of us had some kind of psychic bond between us, which is probably why her being gone is so painful.

Anyway, to conclude, I went into my Lite & Darke folder on my computer and opened my merged file with all of our completed or partially completed chapters, as well as the Book 1 Outline we only partially finished filling out. Don’t think even for a second that was all we’d planned together. No, we outlined the whole series in our heads and words, and I remember every single idea, even without written/typed documentation.

I did some minor editing, finished up a partial chapter, and updated the Outline with the total Word Count so far.

30,000 words.

Yup, you read that right: Thirty Thou, baby!

This doesn’t include all the scenes that JV handwrote during her breaks at work. Like I mentioned before, those are locked up until May 2018 at the latest. However, I found a loop hole. In our Outline, we designated chapters to each of us, labeling each chapters as “C”, “J”, or “Toss Up”. While I can’t work on the “J” ones just yet, and I remain wary of the “Toss Up” ones as well, I can still writing the scenes I was assigned, at least until my creativity monster is satisfied with the progress and lets me go back to Chaos Accounts and/or Kinetics.

Oh, and just FYI, KINETIC REBIRTH is currently doing preorders for the Kindle version, which, as mentioned above, released on September 19th, 2017 (Next Tuesday // SIX DAYS!!). I’ve been a bit disappointed at the lack of preorders I’ve gotten, so if you’ve got a Kindle or a Kindle app, PLEASE preorder a copy! Preorders count once release day hits, and every one matters to me. To preorder the Kindle copy, PLEASE click [here]! It would mean THE WORLD TO ME!

If you’re a print-book type of person, [subscribe] to my email list. You will receive an email closer to print release date, which is October 19th, the six year anniversary of when JV and I became friends. You will also receive an email the day of digital release next Tuesday morning, as well as a reminder on Print release date as well. Print might not be perfectly timed for a recorded release of October 19th, as I’ll have to approve it prior to October 19th to ensure it is live and available for purchase by the 19th, but I will send the print reminder as soon as the book goes live.

Also, if you have a Kindle, you can get a taste of my KINETICS series on Instafreebie, where you can download KINETIC TRAGEDY, a short prequel story available only to Instafreebie subscribers currently. You can get that story [here]. Also, by downloading that story on Instafreebie, you are automatically added to the above aforementioned subscribing e-Newsletter list. So, not only will you get an email alert when my books/stories release, but you get a free story out of it too! 😀

Also, click [here for my FB Author Page] or click [here for my Twitter Account], because there will be updates on both of those pages as well, especially closer to each versions release date.

Anyway guys, Keep Faith.

OH!

Maybe a snippet of the first chapter of KINETIC REBIRTH might give you an idea of whether or not you want to join Jaden, Lukas, Kiran, and Jessica on their journey home.

As a final word before the sneak peek…
“Assume Nothing”

 

SNIPPET START:::

Chapter 1

Keyboard keys tap-tapped all around Jaden Walker. She ripped her gaze from her computer screen to gaze around the competition room. Her spot sat in the second row from the back, with about ten rows of students and computers in front of her. Supervisors scattered around the rows, keeping an eye out for cheaters. Jaden didn’t see the point in that, as every competitor’s test had been randomized out of a pool of questions. In order to cheat, you’d either need a camera and earpiece or be an idiot. That first option screamed “Idiot” to her too, to be entirely honest.
After a quick sweep of the testing room, Jaden locked gazes with one of the Supervisors. His burning amber hair stuck out like a sore thumb as he smiled crookedly at her, as if he knew something she didn’t. That look pointed out the obvious, as he – being a Supervisor – already functioned in an aspect of the business world and obviously would know more than college freshman Jaden Walker. Rolling her eyes, she directed her attention back to her test. Despite the beaming talent surrounding her, she knew she would wipe the floor with them.
About twenty minutes later, she closed down the testing browser, grabbed her coat, and scooched her way down the narrow walkway to get out of the square of competitors. Right as she reached the edge, she ran right into somebody. “I’m sorry-”
“Shhhh…” the man whispered, “Others are still testing.”
Jaden nodded. “Sorry.” She kept her voice hushed as well.
When she looked up at the Supervisor, she recognized him as the red-headed man who’d made her feel annoyed earlier. “May I ask your name?”
Scoffing, she replied lightly, “Like you need to know.”
The smallest of smiles crept onto the man’s face, his green eyes gazing down at her as if analyzing her every move. “I’m sure I’ll know it soon enough.”
“Riiiiiiight…” A chill shot down her back, which she shrugged off. As she turned around to leave, she felt his eyes on her the whole walk to the back exit. As the door shut behind her, she relaxed, releasing a heavy sigh.
“Sooooooo, how’d you do?”
Jaden spotted Lukas, her closest friend, leaning against the wall with one foot flat against the tan wallpaper. “I hope you’re not leaving a shoe print on that wall. The convention center staff might not take too kindly to that.”
Removing his foot, he smiled. “Avoiding the question, I see?”
Shoulders dropping from exasperation, she snapped lightly, “How should I know? I won’t know until the awards ceremony tomorrow night.”
“Jeesh, just asked a question. No need to be harsh.”
Rolling her eyes with a small smile, Jaden walked down the testing hallway. Her eyes skimmed the walls, all plastered with promotional “BS” related to this Phi Beta Lambda national conference. She won first place in two state competitions and second in a third, which gave her admittance to the national level of testing. Even placing in the top ten would be amazing. Plus, it looked impressive on a resume when she would graduate in a few years. She’d just finished her final test, so all that was left of her agenda involved networking with business professionals (in her wording, schmoozing the big wigs) and tomorrow night’s award ceremony at Six PM.
Lukas suddenly appeared at her side, matching her step by step, completely in sync with her pace and speed. “So, no weird people in there?”
“Well there was one guy, but I think other people saw him, so not a figment.” The term “figment” referred to the hallucinations she’d had since she was a child. At first, her parents blamed it on an over-active, childish imagination. Once she’d reached high school and still saw people and animals who weren’t there, her parents worried deeply for their daughter. They employed the help of a shrink, who, for each session, she’d humored with breathing exercises and repetitive mantras and meds until she bolted out to go home and read a book. Rather quickly, she masked her diagnosed schizophrenia from the world, instead diving deep into her studies and avoiding as many social situations whenever possible.
“You trust your sight yet?”
Heaving a heavy sigh, Jaden responded, “Not entirely. You’re still here.”
“Hey!”
After whacking him lightly on the back of his head, she finally cracked a smile. Lukas had been her friend since third grade and stuck like glue to her side. In fact, he went everywhere with her. Weirdly enough, he’d frequently show up out of the blue during personal trips and vacations, insisting he wanted to surprise her. At first, his surprises did shock and elate her, but after a couple years of it, it became pretty predictable. His parents tended to be lenient toward him and his antics, and they somehow had the money for him to follow her pretty much anywhere. Part of her thanked God that he wasn’t another one of her figments. People saw him, talked to him, and played with him, so he existed. Since he’d been by her side for so long, she confided her mental handicap to him early on, and only him. Outside of him and her family, no one knew, and she wanted it to stay that way. She’d thought it was strange with how accepting he was with it. He didn’t freak out or get depressed or feel worrisome. He’d pretty much shrugged it off, like seeing imaginary people everywhere was as normal as pizza on a Friday night.
Lukas rubbed where she whacked him. “Um, ow!”
Her smiled widened slightly as she shoved him with her shoulder. “That didn’t hurt and you know it.” She knew it too, because he possessed a “high pain tolerance”, as he’d reminded her on countless occasions.
With a light chuckle, he shoved her with his shoulder like she had to him. “Good, you remembered.” Then, he froze, stopping in his tracks. His icy blue eyes locked on something ahead. “Uh, oh…”
Her eyes followed his line of sight and easily spotted two teenagers making a beeline for them. Or, rather her, because she went to address Lukas to discover he’d vanished. Again. He’d done this frequently in her life, and it always annoyed her. He didn’t up and poof away in a puff of smoke, but he always picked the perfect moment to disappear on her, usually moments he didn’t want to deal with. “Freaking kidding me, Wolfe!”
The two kids stopped about three feet from her. The girl waved and greeted, “Hi!” Her personality bubbled with childish excitement, like a kid stuck in a sixteen-year-old’s rather bulky body.
Jaden stared at her for a moment before weakly raising a hand as well. “Hi?”
The boy with her rolled his eyes. “Jess, you’re freaking her out.”
The girl’s eyes widened slightly. “I’m so sorry! I didn’t mean to startle you.”
“Not startled,” Jaden replied slowly, “Just weirded out. What can I do for you two?”
The girl and boy looked at each other briefly before turning attention back to her. “My name’s Jessica, but most people call me Jessi. My twin brother here, Kiran, usually calls me Jess or JV, just randomly picking between four different variations of my name. It’s a good thing I’m used to being addressed with all four throughout my life.”
Kiran’s head rolled back as he sighed, “Jess, diarrhea of the mouth again. I honestly don’t think she cares about your millions of nicknames.”
Shaking a hand at him, Jaden said, “It’s fine. I don’t mind. My sister’s the same way sometimes. So, Jessi, Kiran… Can I help you with something?”
The two teens exchanged looks again before looking back at her. Jessi told her, “We think someone might be looking for you.”
Raising an eyebrow, Jaden responded, “Probably my parents. They’ve been wandering around this Gaylord center every time I have mandatory events. I’ll find them eventually, I promise. Now, if you’ll excuse me.”
She walked around them, but only made it two steps before the two kids stepped into her path. Holding up a hand, a “STOP” gesture, Jessi told her, “No, not your parents. Someone else. Someone bad.”
In her mind, Jaden could only call them crazy kids with overactive imaginations. Right when that thought crossed her mind, she recalled that being her parents’ initial reaction to her seeing the figments. These two probably have been dealing with the same stuff she had her whole life, and she felt a pang of empathy for them. “Look, I’m sure security around here will be able to pick him up like a sore thumb.”
Jessi shook her head, her sandy brown hair flying around at the rapid, overly-excited speed she swung it. Jaden caught scattered blonde highlights in the strands of her bob-like haircut. “No, they can’t, because no one can see him. Nobody but you.”
Jaden’s heart started pounding in her chest, her skin chilled with goosebumps. Did these two kids, strangers at that, really know that she was a schizo? Shaking her head slightly to snap out of her worrisome, panicked thoughts, she replied, “I have no idea what you mean by that. Plus, I’ve got a seminar at four that I can’t be late for.”
This time, Kiran spoke up, “Which seminar?”
She hesitated. Clearly these two needed help, or at least needed to stick with their guardian or chaperone. But, she really didn’t see the harm in sharing. “‘Budgeting for Needs and Wants’. Since I’ll be coming out of college debt-free, thanks to my dad’s military benefits, I need to figure out how to budget once I don’t have my parents to help. I graduate in about three years, so it’s better to be prepared, you know?”
Kiran’s eyes lit up, his irises a blue-green that reflected the color of the ocean. “Oh, cool! That sounds like fun! Mind if we tag along?”
As much as Jaden wanted to get as far away from these unhinged children as fast as she could, she bit back her stress and told them nonchalantly, “Yeah, sure, that’s seems okay with me. You can join me. Make sure you have a notebook handy. I’ve heard the speaker is amazing and gives tons of good advice.”
Kiran’s mouth widened into a huge smile. “That’s sounds awesome! Sold! C’mon, Jess, let’s go learn about finances.”
Jessi stared at her brother for a few seconds before sighing heavily. “Alright, Mr. Studious Crazy, I’ll come too. Take notes for both of us though. I don’t want to zone out and not have the amazing knowledge this strange businessman has to offer.”
Jaden recognized the slight sarcasm in the girl’s words, but Kiran’s excitement blocked him from identifying it himself. “Great! Lead the way…” He faded off, biting his lip. He glanced at her and then at his sister.
Mentally rolling her eyes, Jaden filled in the missing blank: “Jaden. Jaden Walker.”
With a smile, Jessi responded, “Nice to meet you, Jaden. I hope we won’t slow you down much.”
As she held back a laugh, remembering a ton of times that Lukas had said that to her in jest, she told her, “Trust me, I’ve dealt with worse. Okay, I believe that seminar is in room 2B.”
“Excellent!” Kiran rubbed his hands together, during which Jaden thought she saw sparks flying out. Trying to snap herself out of those thoughts didn’t work at first.
First figments, and now I’m imagining electricity popping out of a kid’s hands. Don’t tell me my problem is branching out more…
“Let’s go!”
Kiran’s shout of excitement shocked her out of it. Her head snapped up from where it had been angled at the floor to find the two teens halfway across the atrium. Kiran waved at her excitedly. “C’mon, slowpoke! Thought this was your panel choice.”
Her face cracked a small smile at his eagerness. As she walked to catch up with them, a question ran through her head that worried her.
Did they know?
Followed by a second one:
How?

Wild News Wed – T-Minus 3 days until COVER REVEAL WITH A SURPRISE!

So, Vikans, Guess what?

KINETIC REBIRTH’S COVER REVEAL IS THIS SATURDAY!

THIS.

SATURDAY.

*insert excited squealing here*
*deep breath*
Okay, I am calm. We’ll see how long that lasts.

Time has flown by this year. After losing JV in late January, I felt broken and lost. A part of my heart had been ripped out and torn into millions of pieces. She was my closest friend. I could tell her everything and anything, and she wouldn’t judge or criticize. She was the purest, kindest, most supportive friend I could’ve asked for, and was one of those people that you’re lucky if you meet one in your entire life. A diamond, a gem, an angel on earth that had to return to Heaven WAY too soon, life cut short in the blink of an eye.

The only grateful thought I have is that she went almost instantaneously, no pain whatsoever. That is at least a blessing. But, it’s still not coping, and it’s still not closure.

But, KINETICS is both.

I went on my Smoky retreat, only a mere three weeks or so after losing JV. My Smoky companions were supportive and gentle, which helped knowing what weight I’d put on my shoulders by starting KINETICS. If you want more details on this adventure, read my previous posts from this year. I should be updating my Index tab this weekend as well, just FYI. But, in a nutshell, almost every character in this KINETICS series is one that they two of us came up with while roleplaying online together. All but one. The only character we didn’t create together is JV herself. I have inserted her as one of the heroes of the series. I had hoped that I could write her as accurate and true to JV in real life, but wasn’t quite sure if I’d captured it. I got this from my editor when I got the edits back:

KatNotes-JV_Compliment-Cropped

… And my happiness shot through the roof. Still, as my editor had never actually met JV, I knew I’d written JV’s character well to be liked, but there still wasn’t substantial proof that I wrote her accurately. However, I sent the short story prequel, “KINETIC TRAGEDY”, to three of JV’s closest friends, as well as JV’s husband/widower. All four loved it, and told me, “Yup, that was perfectly Jess.”

Side note real quick. “KINETIC TRAGEDY”, as of this AM, had just reached 100 downloads! This free short is now more successful than “THE PROTEKTOR’S REALITY”, which has been out since November 2014! I am so excited about the response to this story, so download the e-story and share the link like crazy!!
Proof?

KineticTragedy_2017-08-16_midday

 

*ahem*
Okay, Back on topic.

However, it wasn’t until last weekend that I felt almost certain JV had been written exactly realistic and true to JV in real life. I talked to JV’s mother, who told me JV’s grandmother had read one of the ARCs I gave the family, loved it, said JV was so realistic and honestly her, and also that she guessed I was the main character. To which, I joked with JV’s mom, “Trust me, I wish I was half as cool as Jaden.”

As of hearing that, I knew I’d succeeded on preserving JV in print for all eternity. And I can’t wait to share her awesome bubbly-ness with the world.

If you want to see the cover reveal when it happens, go like my Facebook page, or follow my Twitter, where the news will drop early on Saturday, August 19th (THIS SATURDAY!). I WILL ALSO BE EMAILING MY Instafreebie subscribers, so if you download KINETIC TRAGEDY off there, you’ll get word that way too.

I am so excited to share this adventure with you. I can see JV smiling down on me, patting me on the back, telling me, “You got this.”

Keep Faith, everyone, and STAY TUNED!

THREE DAYS TO COVER REVEAL, BABY!

(Oh, and there’s a surprise announcement that will come out that day too. Hint: has something to do with “digital” books. 😉 lol)

 

Social Media Links:

Instafreebie (KINETIC TRAGEDY short + email list subscription) Link: https://www.instafreebie.com/free/N4Wnr

Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/cmcdonnellauthor/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/discoverywritin

 

#WildNewsWed (2017-08-09)

Hey, everybody! Welcome to another #WildNewsWed blog post!

So, a few updates, along with a short snippet from KINETIC REBIRTH, the first in my KINETICS series, which, if you’ve read any of my blog posts since May/June, you’ll remember it’s releasing October 19th this year. LESS THAN THREE MONTHS! EEEP!!

Anyway, I noticed I got a lot of people reading my blog when I posted [this post] about my communication difficulties. I got an overwhelming response to that, so I want to open up again, just a little bit. And, it partially has to do with my writing journey too.

So, for KINETIC REBIRTH, I had written it in a month. Granted, half of it was written during my Smoky Writers retreat week…

11021147_10205204431726986_4919789665877364578_n

but I still felt so accomplished finishing it within 30-ish days. As this series is my ultimate dedication to my best friend JV, I felt extremely proud of my output, and was super eager to release it as soon as edits and covers were done. However, I wanted its release to mean something to me, as this series would never have existed if I never met JV. I needed a way to honor her, and by picking the date of October 19th, the day we first met via Hyndon roleplaying with mutual friends (see [this] video that talks about this forum-based RP in more detail).

However, as of last week, everything was done. I had finished with my professional editor at the end of April, gotten a cover by mid-June, and finished reediting my proof copy and uploading updated, final draft for release. However, as Createspace doesn’t allow pre-orders for print books (which seems counter-intuitive in my business-oriented half of my brain, as trad-Published authors get that chance, but Amazon won’t do it for their own authors? Seems odd, but that’s Amazon for ya), I can’t hit that “PUBLISH” button until October.

I’ve been keeping myself busy working on Book 2. In fact, I’m already 30,000 words in! My productivity has spiked instantly, and I utilize my free time the best I can, whether five minute waits, lunch breaks, or most nights tapping away at my keyboard. Boyfriend puts up with the transcribing every night, and I am VERY grateful to have him in my life.

HOWEVER, that “Publish” button is a tease. I want to push it right now, and release my best work to the world, so JV can live on forever in the written word. I keep telling myself, “Only three months. That’s all.” While three months is cake compared to the time that passed since I started it in late February, it’s still a pressure I live with every day. I hold onto the meaning behind the release date, reminding myself that this series is ultimately for Jessi, so her spirit, happiness, and energy will live on forever within my writing. And THAT is what makes it worth it. Knowing the meaning, and remembering the fun we had in Hyndon, makes it worth the wait.

I do have a surprise for y’all though. My cover reveal is August 19th, exactly two months before the print release. The surprise will be revealed then.

Also, I have rebranded myself as “C. McDonnell” from now on. As such, I updated all of my previous short stories by adding the new pen name AND, in the case of the Tales of Terrara Vikos stories, BRAND NEW COVERS! I will update the covers here on my website this coming weekend, and you still can’t search “C. McDonnell” on Amazon for some reason, as my stories won’t show up with that. Unfortunate, and hope it’ll be fixed soon.

If you don’t want to miss out on the double reveal, Like my Facebook Author Page!

Well, that about wraps it up. See ya guys next #WildNewsWed!

Keep Faith!

EXCITING NEWS: #Secretproject WIP

So, for those of you familiar with my little slice of the Interwebs, you might have noticed I’ve been spacing on blog posts recently. So, to make up for it, I’ll have a snippet of something below for you guys, even newbies to my sanctuary of a website.

The reason I’ve been otherwise occupied and neglecting this blog is because I’ve been working on a very special WIP. If you follow my social media, you may have noticed me using the hashtag #secretproject for the past couple of weeks. Well, guess what?

It’s finished.

59,000 words in exactly five weeks.

FIVE.

WEEKS.

😮

Yeah, I know, I’m kinda shocked too. I started this manuscript at my regular trip to the Smoky Mountains for our writing retreat. A week in the mountains of Tennessee helped me start this project, and cranked out a little over half of the final word count (~31,000).

The only information I can give at this time is that this project is a testament to JV’s life and free, youthful, random personality. By that, I mean in multiple ways. First off, the characters hold a special place in my heart, but that’s all I can say about plot/character details at this time. In case you can’t tell, this stuff will be *hushhush* for a little while. Need to know basis.

Also, the whole project was me channeling JV in spirit. She always was the most random, funny, relaxed, and spontaneous individual I ever met. In her spirit, I did no planning for this project. NONE. All I started with was the main five characters and the opening setting, and only part of the initiating event. Then, I just let my imagination do the rest. Every time I sat down to work on this project, I had no idea where the story was going, or where it would take my characters and plot. So, when I say every detail and plot thickening scene was completely spontaneous and on-the-spot created, I’m not kidding.

I have also started communicating with an editor, and plan to send this manuscript out to her soon. I’ve also got a beta reader whose opinion I trust, and also layout freelancers on standby. I also want to use the same cover designer who designed “THE PROTEKTOR’S REALITY”, as that cover came out completely badass. She’s got quite an amazing portfolio behind her, and I wouldn’t trust anyone else with this cover. She’ll give it the amazing cover I know it deserves. J

Also, brief update on THE CHAOS ACCOUNTS: I have finished edits on Story #3, titled, “Account of Friendship”. This one follows Luz, a transgender boy whose experience and finesse with technology surpasses a majority of middle-aged IT consultants, and his obsession with Tom Hiddleston and Benedict Cumberbatch is supplemented with a secret eidetic memory and love of pop culture, movies, and entertainment. At the beginning of this story, Luz fears his friendship with Blaine might be weakening, as Blaine starts to neglect him and his own siblings to train and chill with the other members of Division 3. When Blaine realizes he has a life-changing performance back topside, Luz goes with him, not only as tech support, but to help him should the enemy find out he’s unprotected. However, what if ChaosBlaze had known months ago? And, if they did know ahead of time, who would have told them?

Cover reveal in a few days, followed soon after with preorder link once I deal with the nitty-gritty details with Amazon and Smashwords. Aiming for an official release within two/three weeks or so.

To close, I’m going to link to my social media and other links below. The first one below is my Patreon. I’m going to ask every one of you this; PLEASE SHARE MY PATREON! The #secretproject I talked about on this post is slated for a release in very early 2018. Timing with getting things done shouldn’t be a problem. The funds to actually get this #secretproject officially in my hands and the hands of my readers… Yeah, that’s a slight problem. Even if you yourself can’t pledge to me (trust me, I understand not having money to spare), PLEASE just share the link. If everyone reading this shared this post and/or my Patreon link below, I can get a lot more eyes on the page, and hopefully new Patrons. I’m lagging in the Patron’s department, and all the money I make on Patreon for the next year is going toward this #secretproject , and every little bit helps. All my Patrons, regardless on pledge amount, will get access to my Patron-only feed, which will receive news and updates and sneak peeks and cover reveals a few days before the public. Also, I’ve added a $4 pledge amount to my Patreon page, with only 30 slots, to be added to my secret Facebook group, the members I warmly call my EXMakers. The EXMakers will receive news and updates even sooner than Patrons, and definitely a decent amount of time for the public’s reveals. They will also get sneak peek snippets, sketches and quotes from characters for ANY projects I work on, AND occasionally, I will pose questions for info and polls that might help me decide things for WIPs. After those 30 slots are filled, that benefit of membership will be restricted to $10 pledgers, so pledge while you can!

Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/discoverywritin

Like my Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/christinemcdonnellauthor/

Follow me on Twitter: https://twitter.com/discoverywritin

 

Links to other info on this blog—

Terrara Vikos saga: https://terraravikos.com/terrara-vikos-saga/

The Chaos Accounts series: https://terraravikos.com/the-chaos-accounts/

Original Patreon Announcement

 

And, as always, Vikans: Keep Faith.

(Please share!)

 

Snippet below if from “Account of Friendship”, Story #3 in THE CHAOS ACCOUNTS::

“Luuuuuuuuuz!” yelled Kayla, “Get outta bed, sleepy-head!”

Luz’s bed felt like a trampoline, his body bouncing up and down. His eyes shot open to find that the kids had broken into his room. Again. These unwanted wake-up calls had been happening for the last week. He loved Kayla and Richie, but wished Blaine, as their older sibling, would spend more time with them. The four of them had been confined to this underground “Sanctuary”. While he acknowledged the MRC did this for their safety, Luz felt cabin fever really strongly now, after a month in restrictive captivity.

Richie, the youngest of the Foster brood, dropped halfway on top of Luz, knocking the wind right out of him. “Luzey, wakey-wakey!”

Laughing lightly, Luz gently pushed Richie to the side. “Alright, I’m up, I’m up.” Sitting upright, Luz gazed around his room. The MRC’s budget must be lax or overflowing, based on all the decorations and objects they’d allowed him to buy with their funds. They wanted him to stay so bad that they let him make his room feel more comfortable and homey. Posters of Thor, Captain America, the Suicide Squad, Gotham, and Agents of Shield plastered over the boring tan paint that encased the whole room. Oh, and there were a few Loki posters too. Okay, a little more than a few.

ALRIGHT, Loki essentially wallpapered the room!

Blaine teased him about his Tom Hiddleston obsession, but he didn’t mind. Hiddleston held the number one spot on Luz’s list of extraordinary actors, closely followed by Doctor Strange himself, Benedict Cumberbatch. Blaine may have songs and impersonations memorized and also have talent as a musician, but no one beat out Luz when it came to cinema, technology, and pop culture. While most would label his knowledge about the entertainment industry as female gossip, Luz countered every time by pointing out that gender labelling someone based on their un-stereotypical interests was as effective as telling a bear to not eat the food out of your picnic basket while you’re camping because it’s people food. Not very effective.

(Releasing later this month. Stay Tuned!)

New Years – A Reflection on Life

New Year, new start, right? At the start of every year, all of us look forward to another year where nothing is impossible. Lose that twenty pounds, get that promotion, write that book you’ve been putting off for years, or go on that cross-country trip you’ve always dreamed of. There are a bunch of people I know (me included) that had a big change in their life in 2015. Babies entered some friends’ lives. Some people married their soulmates. Others started new jobs (example, me), big moves, new houses, new cars (example, me [again]), etc, etc.

No matter what did or didn’t happen in 2015, the biggest thing you can say is: I survived 2015. Lots of people can’t say that. Death got personal for me last year, with one of my grandfathers passing away from cancer (as I’ve heard my mentor say a bunch of times, “F–k Cancer”).  He was an amazing guy, and he went out the way he would have wanted, and that’s all that matters to me.

I guarantee lots of you lost loved ones this past year. My heart goes out to all of you, as I have felt that pang a few times in my life, and each time brought me to tears for months to years. It’s hard, looking to the new year without those wonderful people in our lives. Every passing moment stabs our hearts, and it literally hurts.

Here’s a little secret though. Come closer.

Closer…

*whispers* It gets better.

Yep, it does. Does that mean it will get to a point where you will feel nothing? No, unfortunately, the human race has not developed the technology to put your memory into an unfeeling, superhuman automaton with wifi in the head and a feeling suppressor where your heart should be. Sorry, I don’t think that’s going to happen anytime soon. Or, ever, if we’re lucky.

Feeling sadness or depression can be seen as a bad thing, and, to be honest, it is. As someone who’s suffered depression in the past, it’s hard. You shrink away from people, trying to hide the sadness and anxiety in your heart. Wanting someone to listen but not willing to talk about it. Biting back tears when looking at your bank account, your sick sibling/parent, or even just a simple picture.

But, the fact of the matter is, YOU’RE FEELING. Being able to feel is an amazing gift. It allows you to express what you like/don’t like about a situation, and to let others know what you think about something. Feeling is just feeling; there’s no other way to describe it, really. But, it’s amazing when you think about it. It’s something we take for granted.

For instance, I’m worried about an upcoming project of mine (more news in the distant future). That alerts me to plan things out, and have a backup plan should things not turn out right. It also tells me to keep going, so I can prove to myself that I was worried about nothing.

I’m scared of change. This informs me that when change happens, I need to fight back against the fear and take every hit, because, usually, it’ll be worth it in the end.

I’m happy I have a loving family, and a caring, awesome group of close friends. Without them, I wouldn’t have gotten this far in my work career, my writing career, or life in general. Feeling that happiness makes me feel warm and fuzzy and lets me know that not everything sucks.

And I’m upset about death. However, it’s a fact of life. We all will die in the end. If you need advice on how to handle death and your impending demise, consult the Adam Ruins Everything finale. Just a warning, the end is depressing (if you couldn’t guess that already by the topic).

But that doesn’t mean that everything about death is horrible. You have to look at it a different way. Sure, the physical body of the person you love is buried in the ground, but now you have a guardian angel looking out for you. Sure, they can’t affect anything on this plane of being anymore, but the things they did do in our existence left a mark on the lives of so many other people on this Earth. They can’t verbally speak to you anymore, but they live on inside you, in your memories, in your words, in your actions. We choose to focus on their death, because it’s seems easiest to do. But, that hurts you in the end. Don’t focus on their death; focus on their LIFE. The bonds they created that even death cannot break. The changes they made in their own life that affected others in a positive way. The lives they altered, simply by existing and interacting with the world. Their childhood, their schooling, their careers, their family, their friends. At some point in our lives, we made a mark on someone else’s existence, and that’s what we should focus on.

To tell the truth, I would not be on this blog, writing this post right now, if someone in my life hadn’t died. In fact, I wouldn’t be a writer at all. My uncle, while only an active part of my childhood for a year of my elementary school journey, passed away. I was eleven. He was forty.

He was supposed to die at eighteen.197952_1002567381076_3062_n

He was blind, but a genius. He worked as an engineer as an adult, even without being able to see. He had a loving family, who he chose to spend the last year of his life with. He didn’t let his illness or incapacities stop him from achieving his dreams. When he died, I took on that mantra. The night of his death, I wrote my first poem that wasn’t a school assignment. My mother read it – all three pages – and told me I should be a writer.

Almost twelve years later, I have published a novel – dedicated to him, as you’ll see if you picked it up on Amazon -, finished almost ten manuscripts, graduated college a semester early, got an amazing job three months after graduating, and have big plans for the next several years in the career that his death inspired me to take on. I learned to look at the life he had on this earth, not the fact he was gone. Because, I guess, he’s living on inside of me, pushing me to keep going when things get tough.

So, to 2016, I am going to keep pushing forward. No matter what you might throw at me, I will look at my book, my manuscripts, or that poem I wrote twelve years ago – which my mother has made hundreds of copies of throughout the years – and remember why I’m doing this.

Twenty-sixteen:

Bring.

It.

On.